Aropec Anti-Viral Mask Review – 99% Reduction in Viruses

Anti-Viral Mask Aropec Review

Although this blog is dedicated to air pollution and related topics, I recently received an offer to review a mask that is a bit different. Although my main focus is often on pollution masks & respirators, this mask has a different purpose.

Namely, the Aropec mask offered by Craft Cadence (a biking gear company based in the UK), is a mask that functions as an anti-viral surface. The mask features ViralOff technology from the Swedish company Polygiene. 

In this review, I want to share both the scientific research behind the mask as well as my thoughts and opinions on the Aropec Mask. This article is my full review of the anti-viral Aropec mask. 

Before I begin, I do want to note a few points. Firstly, this mask is not intended to be used as a pollution mask. While it does provide some PM2.5 filtration, these results haven’t currently been tested. I would not recommend this mask for anyone searching for a mask for protection from fine particles. 

This mask is instead aimed at reducing the spread of viruses. Especially in a time like this, a mask like this can come in especially useful – it is capable of killing 99% of viruses on it within two hours. 

This brings me to my second point. This mask (and to my knowledge, no mask) cannot instantly kill viruses and will not guarantee protection. I will discuss the impact of ViralOff further soon, however, it is still important to take normal mask precautions when using the Aropec mask. 

This means that you should refrain from touching the surface of the mask, make sure to pull it away from your face when taking it off, and to make sure that you wash your hands thoroughly after taking off the mask. For more details, please refer to the WHO guidelines.


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Aropec Mask Review

Aropec Mask packaging

As I have mentioned, the Aropec features Polygiene anti-viral technology. However, it also features another technology from the same company. This is the Polygiene Biostatic ‘stay fresh’ technology.

While I will cover this technology in more detail later in the article, the main purpose of it is to make ensure that the mask stays fresh by preventing the growth of odour-causing bacteria. From personal experience, masks do tend to smell worse the older they get, and it’s often one of the indicators that tells me when I need a new mask.

However, the anti-viral Aropec mask prevents bacteria that can build up over time from growing. This means that even as the mask ages, you shouldn’t notice odours that are caused by bacteria growing in or on the mask.

These two technologies make this mask particularly interesting. Not only does the mask offer viral protection, but it should remain clean-smelling and bacteria-free until it needs to be replaced!

Purchase the Aropec Anti-Viral Mask | Children’s Size


Anti-Viral Protection

Aropec Mask Layers

Although the Aropec does feature a PM2.5 filter on the middle layer, there are currently no lab results to prove the efficiency of this. Therefore, I would not recommend this mask as an anti-pollution mask.

However, the ViralOff anti-virus technology that the mask uses has been tested (to the ISO18184:2019 test) and proven. The technology has also been tested by Boken Quality Evaluation Institute, a textile testing organisation based in Japan.

Therefore, this mask will be ideal for anyone who is looking primarily for a mask to protect both themselves and others from the spread of viruses. 

ViralOff is a technology that is developed by Polygiene. They then license the use of this technology to other companies to use in their products. This is where the Aropec anti-virus mask comes in. 

ViralOff has been proven to kill viruses (in this case, H3N2 and H1N1) within hours. Within two hours, the technology was able to kill between 99.9 and 99.99% of the viral particles on the surface of the mask. 

Polygiene ViralOff

Polygiene ViralOff viral reduction. Image from Polygiene’s website.

The testing process involves placing viral particles on the surface of the mask, waiting two hours, washing out the surface, and then testing the final viral count. This testing has shown a very large drop in viruses on the surface, and over a longer time span this will be even more effective. 

Further testing has also been done with Influenza A, BirdFlu, Norovirus and Corona (SARS) viruses. All of these viruses reduced by > 99% over two hours (Polygiene).

At first thought, this may not seem particularly impressive. Killing viral particles over a matter of hours still leaves the wearer at risk within that time. However, it has a few very useful implications. 

With the current viral outbreak, it has been found that the dangerous particles can exist on a mask surface for a week or longer. Considering that effective mask disinfection is a difficult process and that disinfection often damages filtration efficacy over time, there are two possibilities. 

Either you need enough masks to be able to rotate through them leaving each for a minimum of 7 days before wearing it again, or, you need a disinfection method. The Aropec anti-viral mask removes the need for this by allowing the user to re-use the mask after leaving it to sit for at least three or four hours.

With masks in such demand and with many shortages occurring, this can come in particularly useful. Further, the mask has an expected lifespan of 50 washes – even if you wash it after every wear, you can expect it to last for 50 uses. This is significantly more than any disposable mask. 

Purchase the Aropec Anti-Viral Mask | Children’s Size


Stay Fresh Technology

Another unique aspect of the Aropec anti-viral mask is that it features another technology from Polygiene – that is Biostatic Technology. This technology uses silver salt (AgCl, silver chloride) to prevent the growth of bacterial particles that can often occur on masks over time.

This technology is especially useful on a mask, as you will be constantly smelling it since it is placed right in front of your nose. If you have worn a reusable mask for a few weeks before, you will quickly realise that they can begin to smell bad. This technology has been tested by ISML.

This technology is safe for both the wearer and the environment. In fact, it is made from Silver chloride which is naturally present in water and soil! Products that are coated in this technology can be recycled as normal.

From personal experience, I found that this technology was very useful. As I mentioned previously, I have tried tens of different masks, and I often find that they end up smelling bad after a few weeks. Since you are constantly breathing through them, they quickly become damp and humid, providing great places for bacteria to grow.

I have not yet noticed any bad smells coming from the mask and considering that I have used the mask for a couple of weeks (over 20 uses), this is quite impressive. Often I begin to notice smells coming from the mask after around this period of time – or as soon as they get damp.

The addition of this technology is very useful, and it’s something that I hope will become more standard in the industry. Being able to rely on your mask staying fresh and clean-smelling is a big bonus once it has been worn a few times.

Re-Mask anti-pollution mask review.


Fit

Aropec Anti Viral Mask Review 1

The Aropec Mask is approximately the size of large masks from other brands. Currently, there is only one mask size. However, while the mask is too large for me, I have found that I am still able to achieve a decent fit.

There is a wire nosepiece in the top of the mask which will allow you to adjust the mask to fit your face shape. I found that the wire was quite easily manipulated, and this allowed for easy adjustment. When the wire in masks is too strong I often fear that I will break it, however, in this mask the wire is easily malleable.

When I received the Aropec Mask I also noticed that the ear-straps weren’t tied. Rather than coming tied, the straps were left simply as elastic strings. This allows the user to tie the straps as they see fit – allowing for a more adequate fit for each wearer.

I also found that the Aropec Mask wasn’t as tightly fitting as many other masks that I have tested. While the intention of the mask is different from that of a respirator, you will notice that it’s hard to achieve as tight of a fit as you would with a pollution respirator.

It does, however, provide a bigger surface area. This means that it is able to capture more particles that the wearer expels and from other sources.

The Aropec Mask is also available in a children’s size. I have not had the chance to test this mask myself yet. However, since only the size is changed it seems like a good option for anyone looking for viral protection for younger family members.

Purchase the Aropec Anti-Viral Mask | Children’s Size


Design

Aropec Mask Review

The design of the Aropec is perhaps the most unique aspect of the mask. The mask features three different layers that all have different purposes.

The first layer is the most interesting – it features the ViralOff technology as well as being made out of a water-repellent technology. I have tested the water repellence and I found it to be very good – the vast majority of droplets simply slide off the surface.

Since most masks loose filtration effectiveness when wet, this is a welcome addition. It also protects the second layer of the mask which is the particle filtration layer. This means that the mask should stay drier in wet conditions and should allow for more effective filtration.

The interior layer of the mask features the Polygiene Biostatic technology that should prevent odours from forming over the lifespan of the mask. This layer is also anti-bacterial, providing additional protection to the wearer.

The mask is also extremely light. When you are wearing it for extended periods of time, this is something that will come in very useful. Even when wearing the mask for a whole morning I found that it was comfortable – especially when compared to many other reusable masks.

Despite being light, the mask doesn’t feel cheap. I have worn the mask around 20 times so far, and I haven’t noticed any damage from wear. You should have no difficulty using the mask for the recommended 50 washes.

Purchase the Aropec Anti-Viral Mask | Children’s Size


Reusability & Lifespan

Craft Cadence recommends that the Aropec should be used for around 4-6 months of wear or for around 50 washes. For days of average wear (around 2 hours), this is comparable to most other reusable masks & respirators.

The ViralOff coating should last indefinitely. However, washing the mask should be avoided when possible for the longest lifespan – ‘It is a durable and always-on treatment. For best performance and sustainability, wash less and only when needed’ (ViralOff).

The Biostatic technology in the mask should also easily last for the lifetime of the product. Thankfully, since these technologies are also environmentally friendly, no special steps need to be taken when disposing of the mask.


Conclusion – Aropec, a Proven Anti-Viral Mask

Aropec Anti Viral Mask Review

The Aropec mask fits a previously blank area in the market. Where we have hundreds of different types of respirators, and many different cloth and surgical face masks, we don’t have any masks aimed directly at viruses.

While this mask doesn’t instantly kill viral particles, the technology has some useful implications. Whereas masks should be alternated (leaving at least 7 days between uses) or disposed of, the Aropec mask provides a way to reuse the mask daily – or even after a few hours. This is not only more environmentally friendly, but it’s also far more cost-effective for the wearer.

The mask is quite large, but its size can easily be adjusted using the straps as they are tie-able by the user. If you are looking for a mask to wear for longer periods of time, this is by far one of the most comfortable I have worn. It’s relatively loose-fitting, and the mask itself is very light.

For someone looking for a mask to wear that protects both themselves and others from viral particles, the Aropec is a great choice. Further, it’s also very affordable!

This mask also features two aspects that I hope to become standard one day – the water-resistant outer layer, and the Biostatic technology. These two aspects combined make wearing the mask very comfortable. Especially considering that dampness is often one of the biggest contributing factors for bad smells in masks.

I have been wearing this mask over the summer in Seoul (which is often around 35 degrees celsius) and I have to say that this is one of the most comfortable masks I have worn. The breathing resistance is low, and the mask is one of the cooler masks that I have worn.

For these reasons, the Aropec anti-viral mask is a great mask for anyone looking for viral protection. It offers significantly better protection than a cloth mask, and the reusability makes it better than most respirators.

Purchase the Aropec Anti-Viral Mask | Children’s Size


Aropec Mask FAQ

How Effective Is the Aropec Mask Against Viruses?

The ViralOff technology on the Aropec Mask is capable of killing 99% of viral particles within 2 hours. Over 4 hours, it is capable of killing between 99.9% and 99.99%.

Where Can I Purchase the Aropec Mask?

The Aropec anti-viral mask can be purchased from Craft Cadence who resell them.

Can the Aropec Mask Kill Viruses Instantly?

No. No mask can currently kill viruses instantly. However, it has been proven to kill 99% of viruses over two hours.

How Long Can I Wear the Aropec Mask?

Craft Cadence recommends that the Aropec should be used for around 4-6 months of wear or for around 50 washes. For days of average wear (around 2 hours), this is comparable to most other reusable masks & respirators.

Can I Wash the Aropec Anti-viral mask?

Yes. It can be washed around 50 times before it needs to be replaced.

Is the Aropec Mask Comfortable?

While no mask is entirely comfortable, this is definitely one of the more comfortable masks that I have tried. This is due to the fact that it is more loosely fitting and easy to breathe through.

6 thoughts on “Aropec Anti-Viral Mask Review – 99% Reduction in Viruses”

  1. Jon Eric V Imperio

    do you think this mask is suitable for running, walking and cyclign outdoors where ability to breath, wet conditions (sweat, rain, saliva, etc) are important factors that surgical and other cloth mask are lacking (performs poorly when wet + hampers breathing and eventually tempting the user to pull down mask to their chin)?

    1. Hello Jon,

      While no mask is as effective in the conditions that you mentioned, the Aropec (from my experience) does perform better than most. The water-resistant outer layer is quite effective in light rain, and the inner layer against bodily fluids.

      In regards to breathing resistance, I also think this is one of the better masks. It is definitely uncomfortable in hotter conditions when you start to sweat but compared to other masks it performs well. I am not sure about surgical masks as I personally never use them, but I have found it to be easier to breathe through than cloth masks.

  2. Just to be clear, though, this mask is only anti-viral in the sense that any virus that has lodged on or in it will be killed within a few hours? If so, then the only real benefit from that is that the mask can safely be reused daily without active disinfection.

    That’s helpful, but if I’m wearing a mask because of viruses I am more concerned about filtering them out of the air I am breathing in and out. If I’ve already breathed the virus in, it doesn’t help me much that a few hours later I can touch the mask without picking up any more viruses. If I understand right, this mask does not claim to filter particles any better than an ordinary cloth mask such as can now be bought at almost any shop.

    For now, I think a mask such as the Meo Lite is much better for virus protection. Though if Meo could add this virus killing technology to their existing masks, that would be the best of both worlds!

    1. Sorry, I just clocked that the mask does have PM2.5 filtering. So, I’m being unfair to say that it is no better than a cloth mask.

      But no specific testing of filtering, so unclear how much virus filtering it provides.

    2. Yes, this is correct. I tried to stress that in the article – the mask can only kill viruses over a period of a few hours. However, as you pointed out, this should provide benefits by allowing the wearer to reuse the mask more regularly.

      This mask does feature a filter (the middle layer) which should work significantly better than a cloth mask. However, the filter has not been tested by a third party (the company is working on that) and as such, I didn’t want to mention it.

      I always make sure to only write about the scientifically proven filtration qualities of the masks and respirators that I test. Since the Aropec Mask currently lacks this, I chose not to mention it in the article.

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